Fritillaria pudica (Pursh) Spreng.
Yellow Fritillary, Yellow Missionbells, Golden Bells
Liliaceae (Lily Family)
Synonym(s): Lilium pudicum, Ochrocodon pudicus
USDA Symbol: FRPU2
The stem of Yellow Missionbells or Yellow Fritillary grows 1 ft. high and is a dainty bearer of a clear yellow, hanging, bell-like flower. This dainty little plant has 1 yellow, narrowly bell-shaped flower hanging at the top of the flower stalk. There may be a pair or a whorl of linear leaves subtending the solitary (sometime 2-3 in a group) flower. The flower fades to red or purple.
A charming, modest Lily that can be mistaken for no other; the narrow yellow bell becomes rusty red or purplish as the flower ages.
From the Image Gallery
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Fruit Type: Capsule
Size Notes: Up to about 1 foot tall.
Bloom InformationBloom Color: Yellow
Bloom Time: Mar , Apr , May , Jun
DistributionUSA: CA , CO , ID , MT , ND , NM , NV , OR , UT , WA , WY
Canada: AB , BC
Native Distribution: S. B.C. to n. CA (e. of the Cascades), e. to s.w. Alt., WY & UT; also historically near Mandan, ND
Native Habitat: Grasslands; sagebrush desert; ponderosa or mixed conifer forests
Growing ConditionsWater Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
CaCO3 Tolerance: Medium
Soil Description: Dry, rocky soils.
Conditions Comments: Golden bells can not be grown successfully out of its range. In the garden, fritillaries are often finicky, the bulbs are eaten by gophers, and the foliage is devoured by snails and slugs. In addition, plants often take a year or two "off" from flowering, making only a single, broad, tongue-shaped basal leaf during those times. To assure good flowering, one needs a colony of several bulbs.
BenefitUse Wildlife: Bear and rodents eat the bulbs. Deer and other grazers eat the leaves and seed pods.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Find Seed or Plants
Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.
From the National Organizations DirectoryAccording to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR
Web ReferenceWebref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter
Additional resourcesUSDA: Find Fritillaria pudica in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Fritillaria pudica in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Fritillaria pudica
MetadataRecord Modified: 2023-02-10
Research By: TWC Staff